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Poster: Hal R Date: Mar 2, 2010 6:59pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: How many of you....

What Got Me On The Bus - part 2

Next buy was Anthem of The Sun and I was just amazed by the complexity and power and the 1st record with Viola Lee Blues which I played over and over and thought was mind blowing. Then came Live Dead with Dark Star, St. Stephen and the Eleven and it seemed as though I had just been given the key to open the gates to the universe. There was just a tremendous opening that happened. This was a new reality. I was on a cosmic journey. Then American Beauty and Workingman’s which just seemed to wrap around me and hug me with comfort and pleasure in simplicity and the roots and an appreciation for the little joys and the rural blue collar world I lived in.

I was 16 and it was 1972 when I heard Skull and Roses and the world was exciting and I knew I was going to eventually get out of this farming and manufacturing town. I also knew that I was not going to end up in some war in Asia shooting at someone or being shot at for Tricky Dick or his bunch of idiots, no way, I knew I would find a way to avoid that, that was the big part of any future plans. My friends and I were becoming Freaks. We were reading books by Abbie Hoffman, Alan Watts, Kurt Vonnegut, Carlos Castaneda; The Greening of America, Future Shock, A Child’s Garden of Grass, The Electric Kool Aid Acid Test, The Making of A Counterculture, Zap Commix and the Fabulous Furry Freak Brothers and underground newspapers from Iowa City and turning on. We listened to the bands from Woodstock and San Francisco and David Peel and Bob Dylan and Firesign Theater and of course the Beatles, Rolling Stones and Who. As time went on our identification with the Grateful Dead, Allman Brothers and Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young were part of what gave us our common brotherhood and made us stand out. Some of you are smiling now as you read this because you were there with us in different places throughout the country. We were the Freaks!

For our graduation in 1974 we nominated Truckin’ as our class song and it would have won had not all the straights tripped out on the fact that the Freaks were going to have a song by the Grateful Dead be the class song. People were actually lobbied not to vote for Truckin’, girls told their boyfriends not to or else! We lost.

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Poster: Hal R Date: Mar 2, 2010 7:29pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: How many of you....

What Got Me On The Bus - part 3

So shoot ahead to 1978 and listening to the band all that time, even finding awesome bootleg records (one was 2/13/70 which blew me away) and it all being wrapped in with reading the Beats and learning to meditate and having the Whole Earth Catalog be my bible and backpacking and hitchhiking and altered hikes in the woods. The show was 2/5/78 at the UNI Dome, University of Northern Iowa and only a few in our group of extended friends had seen them because they hadn’t played around here for four years. Some of us had been primed for this for six or seven years. There was the actual Jerry Garcia on stage playing for us! It was so much better than we had ever even imagined. We were yelling at each other “I can’t believe we are finally seeing the Grateful Dead” and they played Truckin’ and we were blissful dancing screaming beaming fools. We were hearing our band at last. We were home.